Transparency International calls on secrecy haven supervisors to take real action against corruption

Issued by Transparency International Secretariat



Transparency International calls on the regulators of offshore secrecy havens to live up to their promise to take action against dirty money from passing through their financial systems and commit to establishing public registries of beneficial ownership.

The Group of International Finance Center Supervisors or GIFCS (formerly known as the Offshore Group of Banking Supervisors) is made up of the financial watchdogs of twenty secrecy havens, including the British Virgin Islands, Panama and the Cayman Islands. They are meeting in Chile on 29 November.

In April the GIFCS members agreed to provide plans at the Chile meeting to strengthen their oversight of financial enablers like Mossack Fonseca, the firm at the heart of the Panama Papers disclosures. The Panama Papers revealed how secretly owned companies in offshore havens are used for financial crime, corruption and tax evasion.

“Now is the time for real action that goes far beyond commitments on paper and that actually takes serious and enforceable steps to stop the corrupt. The scale and number of Panama Papers stories was unprecedented, yet it is clear they represent just a tiny fraction of the ongoing abuses enabled by secrecy in the global financial system,” said Cobus de Swardt, Managing Director of Transparency International.

Transparency International has written to each of the offshore financial supervisors last week asking them to:

These twenty secrecy jurisdictions alone hold almost 10 percent of global international banking assets, according to their own estimates.

In 2014, the group of supervisors published an oversight Standard for its members, specifically aimed at providers of secretly owned shell companies and offshore trusts. However, members will only be required to become “largely compliant” with this self-established benchmark by the year 2019.   

Given their outsized role in the global financial system, the oversight of the secret company providers operating in these jurisdictions must urgently become more effective or abuses like those uncovered by the Panama Papers will continue. 

###

Transparency International is the global civil society organisation leading the fight against corruption.

Note to Editors:

The members of the Group of International Financial Centre Supervisors (GIFCS) are:

Antigua and Barbuda - Financial Services Regulatory Commission

Aruba - Central Bank of Aruba

Bahamas - Central Bank of The Bahamas

Barbados - Central Bank of Barbados

Bermuda - Bermuda Monetary Authority

British Virgin Islands - Financial Service Commission

Cayman Islands - Cayman Islands Monetary Authority

Cook Islands - Financial Supervisiory Commission Cook Islands

Curacao and St Maarten - Centrale Bank van Curacao en Sint Maarten

Gibraltar - Gibraltar Financial Services Commission

Guernsey - Guernsey Financial Services Commission

Isle of Man - Isle of Man Financial Services Authority

Jersey - Jersey Financial Services Commission

Labuan - Labuan Financial Services Authority

Macao, China - Monetary Authority of Macao

Panama - The Superintendency of Banks of The Republic of Panama

Samoa - Samoa International Finance Authority

Turks & Caicos Islands -Turks & Caicos Financial Services Commission

Vanuatu - Reserve Bank of Vanuatu

Contact details for the GIFCS members are available via the GIFCS website at http://www.gifcs.org/index.php/about/members-and-observers


For any press enquiries please contact

Media contacts:
T: +49 30 34 38 20 666
E: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Latest

Support Transparency International

The theme for the 18th edition of the International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC) is announced

Building on the priorities set out in the Panama Declaration, the 18th IACC in Denmark from 22 to 24 October 2018 will move the pledge of acting together now to concrete action.

A new home for our corruption research

Transparency International is excited to announce the launch of the Knowledge Hub, a dedicated online space for our research.

Pardon me? Presidential clemency and impunity for grand corruption

Recent events in Brazil and Peru have shone a spotlight on the issue of presidential pardons in cases of grand corruption. Read more to find out the best practices that legislators can use to ensure that pardons are not abused for political purposes.

Stopping Dirty Money: the Global Effective-O-Meter

As of December 2017, global effectiveness at stopping money laundering stands at 32% effectiveness.

Corruption in the USA: The difference a year makes

A new survey by Transparency International shows that the US government has a long way to go to win back citizens’ trust.

Anti-Corruption Day 2017: Empowering citizens’ fight against corruption

The 9 December, is Anti-corruption Day. A key part of Transparency International’s work is to help people hold their governments to account. Have a look at what we've been doing around the world!

Digital Award for Transparency: Honouring digital initiatives to fight corruption

The Digital Award for Transparency awards individuals and civil society organisations who have developed digital technology tools used to fight corruption. The award aims at strengthening and promoting existing initiatives that promote good governance through three categories: Open Data, Citizen Engagement and Anti-Corruption Tools.

Social Media

Follow us on Social Media

Would you like to know more?

Sign up to stay informed about corruption news and our work around the world